Below you will learn how to seamlessly sew together stitches using the Kitchener stitch. The Kitchener stitch is used to close knitted fabric. With our step-by-step instructions, you will be able to create hidden seams in socks, sweaters, stuffies, etc.
Continue reading below to learn how to create the Kitchener stitch with our easy step-by-step instructions.
What Is the Knitting Kitchener Stitch?
The Knitting Kitchener stitch is a handy stitch that gives you the ability to stitch together completed pieces invisibly. When you use the Kitchener stitch, you will not have to worry about your project being bumpy or mishappen.
When you use the Kitchener stitch you are creating a fluid seam. This removes harsh seams that can be uncomfortable to wear. Harsh seams can rub against the skin, causing irritation and inflammation.
When you put a lot of work into making a project, you do not want to ruin it with a bad seam.
When is the Kitchener Stitch Knitting Used?
The Kitchener stitch may seem complicated at first, but once you learn it, you will use it all the time. The stitch will make your final projects look professional. The stitch can be used for almost any knitting project with live edges, but it is most commonly used for the toes of socks.
The Knitting Kitchener stitch is often used when making:
- Stuffed Toys
- Infinity Scarfs
How to Graft Using the Kitchener Stitch
- Supplies Needed
- Your Project
- Matching Yarn
- Tapestry Needle
- Knitting Needles
Step-by-Step Kitchener Stitch Instructions
Usually, you will be working with live stitches that are still on your knitting needles. There may be times when you will be working with a live edge and a cast on edge. For our tutorial, we will be using 2 live edges.
When pulling the yarn through, you do not want it to be too tight or too loose. Just give it a gentle tug and make it taut. You will want the finished stitches to match the stitches of your project and blend in seamlessly.
Follow the step-by-step instructions below to learn the basics of the Kitchener stitch:
1. Thread your tapestry needle with your coordinating yarn.
2. In your left hand, hold both knitting needles with the live stitches parallel to each other. Point the tips of the knitting needles toward your right hand. The wrong sides of your knitting should be together. And both needles should have the same number of stitches.
3. Insert the threaded tapestry needle into the first stitch on the knitting needle that is closest to you. Insert the needle as if you were going to purl.
4. Pull the needle and yarn through the stitch. Leave a tail that is 2” to 3”. Leave the stitch on the needle.
5. Next, insert the tapestry needle into the first stitch of the back needle as if you were going to knit. Leave the stitch on the needle.
6. Now insert the tapestry needle into stitch one on the first needle as if you were going to knit.
7. Pull the stitch off the needle and pull the yarn through.
8. Next, insert the threaded tapestry needle into the first stitch on the knitting needle that is closest to you. This was the second stitch, but it is not the first since you removed the first stitch. Insert the needle as if you were going to purl.
9. Pull the needle and yarn through the stitch. Leave the stitch on the needle.
10. Now insert the tapestry needle into stitch one on the back needle as if you were going to purl.
11. Pull the stitch off the needle and pull the yarn through.
12. Next, insert the tapestry needle into the first stitch of the back needle as if you were going to knit. This was the second stitch, but it is not the first since you removed the first stitch. Leave the stitch on the needle.
13. Repeat steps 6-12 until you get to the end of your project. Purl off on the last stitch.
14. Weave in both tails to finish the project.
Tips for Using the Kitchener Stitch on Socks
When you use the Kitchener stitch on socks, you may notice there are ears on the toes. However, with one simple trick, you can eliminate these eyesores.
To stitch the sock without ears, treat the front two stitches on the front needle as one stitch and the last two stitches as one stitch. Do the same for the back needle.
With this tip, you will no longer have unsightly ears on your socks.
Do you Have Difficulty using the Kitchener Stitch in your Knitting Projects?
If you have trouble with the Kitchener stitch, try this one instead.
You will need:
- Your socks
- 2 Large safety pins
- 3 double-pointed knitting needles
1. Take the 2 large safety pins. Run one pin through the toe stitches on one side and the other pin through the stitches on the other side. Close the pins.
2. Carefully, turn the socks wrong side out. Make sure the pins do not come open.
3. Take 2 of the double pointed knitting needles. Run one through the stitches on one needle. And the other through the stitches on the other pin. Remove the pins.
4. Begin connecting the toes together with the third needle. To do this, insert it into the first stitch on the front needle as if you are going to knit. Then, insert it into the first stitch on the back needle as if you are going to purl.
5. Remove both stitches off to the needle to the right.
6. Repeat steps 4 and 5 until you get to the end of your project.
7. Finish by binding off the last 2 stitches.
To Keep An Eye On
Check your tension as you go. The stitches should blend with the knitted stitches.
If you are working a PURL row, then simply REVERSE your stitches for it to blend with PURL stitches.
Kitchener Stitch Knitting Video Tutorial
How to Kitchener Stitch Socks without Ears
So you’ve mastered the kitchener stitch, but your socks have little ears on the sides of the toes? Here’s how to keep that from happening.
It’s quite simple really, just graft the first two stitches on the front needle as one, and then do the same with the back needle.
Continue as normal until you get to the last two stitches on both the front and back needles and again work those off as one single stitch.
There you go, kitchener stitch shaping!
How to BIND OFF with the Kitchener Stitch
Kitchener stitch bind off : Insert your tapestry needle into the stitch on the FRONT needle, pull yarn through and remove stitch from the needle. THEN, insert your tapestry needle into the stitch on the BACK needle, pull yarn through and remove stitch from the needle.
Now you can easily weave together knitted sections invisibly for a nice and coherent completed project.
If you have a project that needs to be closed, try the Kitchener stitch. Using the knitting Kitchener stitch will finish the project by connecting all the pieces together into one single item. And when you use the Kitchener stitch, all your seams will be invisible.